The recent death of George Floyyd has left the world shocked. Massive protests have rocked different corners of this planet. The audacity with which a black life is taken away baffles the humanity. This grown man, whether Muslim or not, pleaded for his life. When he realized his body will no longer take the weight of the police official, he asked for water, he asked for his mother, he repeatedly said he can’t breathe. With his death, the world came out to shout “BLACK LIVES MATTER”. Others came out and said ALL LIVES MATTER. 1400 years ago, The Prophet (peace be upon him) endorsed both these movements. So Islam, without a speck of doubt, stands with both! In essence, there is no racism in Islam.
Examples of Anti – Racism in Islam
There are plenty of examples laid out throughout the verses of the Qur’an and the life of the Prophet (peace be upon him) which clearly stand against racism.
One instance is the adopted son of the Prophet (peace be upon him) – Zaid ibn Harithah (may Allah be pleased with him), who was dark skinned. Being a Prophet, he could have adopted any fair skinned child from among the Arabs. But he didn’t because skin color never mattered to him. The Prophet (peace be upon him) not only adopted him, but raised him like his own son, never deprived him of anything, never treated him with scorn and never uttered a harsh word towards him.
Now let us head towards another example – that of Bilal (may Allah be pleased with him). Bilal was a dark skin slave who knew nothing of Islam except that a Prophet (peace be upon him) was claiming that God is One (Ahad-un-Ahad). This was enough for him to embrace Islam. He bore all torture at the hands of his master for mere belief in the Oneness of Allah. And Allah honored all his efforts. Bilal became the first person to call Muslims to prayer. He was revered and respected amongst the Muslims. There was no such thing as an Arab or a fair skinned man leading the prayer. The skin color did not matter, what mattered was righteousness of action and intention. This is anti – racism in action.
Quran and Hadith against Racism
“…We created you from a single (pair) of a male and a female and made you into nations and tribes, that you may know each other. Verily the most honored of you in the sight of God is he who is the most righteous of you.”
This is further elucidated by the Prophet (peace be upon him) when he reiterated the need for tolerance to people of all denominations: an Arab has no superiority over a non-Arab, nor a non-Arab has any superiority over an Arab, also a white has no superiority over a black, nor a black has any superiority over white except by piety and good action.
In a world obsessed with “fairness”, would you follow the example of The Prophet (peace be upon him)?
Also Read: Quran and the Highway Robber